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Climate Change Approaching “Critical Threshold”

Senior IPCC Scientist Chris Field of Stanford told members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) that global warming is happening faster than the IPCC calculated just two years ago, the Financial Times reports.

Professor Field said that the rapid increase in coal-burning since 2000 presents “a real risk that human-caused climate change will accelerate the release of carbon dioxide from forest and tundra ecosystems, which have been storing a lot of carbon for thousands of years.”

Scientists fear that the release of CO2 and methane from melting permafrost could accelerate warming in a ‘positive feedback loop’ that would be beyond our power to control.

There was optimism at the annual AAAS meeting, however, about President Obama’s determination to tackle climate and energy issues, and the importance his administration has placed on science.

More on IPCC reports here.

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2 thoughts on “Climate Change Approaching “Critical Threshold”

  1. The “critical threshold” will be met when the routine failure of non-irrigated crops caused by record high summer temperatures will lead to wide-spread famine and the death spiral of civilization:

    “Few seem to realise that the present IPCC models predict almost unanimously that by 2040 the average summer in Europe will be as hot as the summer of 2003 when over 30,000 died from heat. By then we may cool ourselves with air conditioning and learn to live in a climate no worse than that of Baghdad now. But without extensive irrigation the plants will die and both farming and natural ecosystems will be replaced by scrub and desert. What will there be to eat? The same dire changes will affect the rest of the world and I can envisage Americans migrating into Canada and the Chinese into Siberia but there may be little food for any of them.” –Dr James Lovelock’s lecture to the Royal Society, 29 Oct. ’07

    The alternative to geoengineering is the acceptance of a massive cull of mankind.

  2. The questions are scientific, but the UN answers are political. The global warming debate is hardly about science. It has become a cause célèbre, championed by activists, politicians and celebrities. To deny their belief that humans are the cause of global warming, is to invoke their wrath. Science is not consensus; Science is theory, observation and measurement. Science is not, “let’s all take a vote on the speed of light and see what number we get.” Science is dictated by nature’s rules.

    Don J. Easterbrook, Ph.D., emeritus professor of geology at Western Washington University, asked, “What does it take to ignore 10 years of global cooling, sharply declining temperatures the last couple of years, record setting lack of sun spots . . . failure of computer models to predict real climate, predictable warming and cooling climates for the past 500 years. The answer is really quite simple — just follow the money!”

    Me thinks the good professor will be out of a job when the wheels fall off of this religion.

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